I have read some of the other posts and feel comforted knowing the way I feel is normal after all for someone who lost a spouse.  I decided to come up with a list of some of my most challenging things to deal with since my husband died 11/5/2010 in a car accident.  This is a list of my top 40 (in no special order).

 

Some of the hardest things to cope with after you lose your spouse:

  1. Lonliness
  2. Emptiness
  3. Not being able to hear them laugh; tell you everything is going to be okay or ask "what sounds good for dinner?"
  4. Never being able to feel their kiss or warm embrace again.
  5. Dealing with planning a funeral.
  6. Feeling so alone yet in a room full of people.
  7. Wishing someone would call to let you know they care.  Sometimes hoping no one will call since you just don't feel like you can talk without crying.
  8. Wishing someone would call to invite you to do something fun and be understanding if you were not up to it on that particular day.
  9. Having people say: "You are so strong." What choice do I have?  I can dig a hole or try to put one foot in front of the other one day at a time.
  10. People saying "Let me know if you need anything - I will be there."  and when you call they don't come, or cancel at the last minute.
  11. Dealing with insurance companies and waiting on them to process the paperwork!
  12. Dealing with the bills on your own income (if you are fortunate enough to have that).
  13. Hearing "You'll be okay - you just have to be strong."  I know I am not the first to face this type of loss nor will I be the last but I need to face it my way and in my time.
  14. For me reading posts from nurses that worked with my husband in the ER on facebook.  I am amazed at some of the things they say -  HELLO I am his widow and you asked me to be your "friend" I didn't ask you! I have learned how to block their comments now without denying them as a "friend".
  15. Watching television and reading the newspaper.  I hate it - it is so meaningless now to me.
  16. Thinking about all the chores that need to be done and wondering how I am going to get them all done.
  17. Not being able to depend on people who make promises to help and then don't come or show up.  Don't bother - it is easer to hear sorry I can't do it this time rather then "sure" and then be a no show.  That just reinforces how alone I feel.
  18. Not being able to sleep and not being able to get rid of that anxious feeling.
  19. Listening to people talk about their husbands that are still living and part of their lives.  Most of all negative comments but sometimes even the things on facebook like: "If you have the best husband in the world and wouldn't trade him for anything - someone who is always there for you, you love with all your heart, etc." repost this to your status.....    I am glad they are happy but it makes me sad...
  20. Hating the fact that I am irritable and depressed and not joyful.  This is out of character for me, yet feeling guilty if I do laugh and joke...
  21. Not looking forward to holidays, birthdays, vacations.
  22. Not knowing what the future is going to hold and scared to death of what the future may hold.
  23. Worried that I will get sick or die and cause my children more suffering.
  24. Wishing I could be the one who died - yet not wishing this pain on anyone.
  25. Feeling the loss of my title "Mrs.".
  26. Having the title "Widow".
  27. Worried about creeps calling me or bothering me knowing that I don't have my husband now and that I am "single".  Scared to even think of dating someone in the future or starting a new relationship.  No one can fill this void.
  28. Too sad to look in his closet and dresser and cannot even contemplate what I am going to do with all of his things.
  29. Scared to be alone for the rest of my life without my husband to lean on and talk to about the hard stuff.
  30. For me - scared to face the eventual loss of my mom, 6 yr old grand-daughter with muscular dystrophy, and trying to keep the two grandchildren with Cystic Fibrosis healthy so I won't lose them too.
  31. Feeling like no one truely understands.
  32. Feeling too overwhelmed to call someone - not even sure who to call or what to say.
  33. Having to walk the dog - my husband always did that (not that I don't enjoy it once I get out there) and feeling guilty if I don't.
  34. Watching my sons and grandchildren also grieve the loss of their father and grand-father.
  35. Crying in public when I see or hear something that makes me think about my husband and how much I miss him.
  36. Having to go to work and pretend that everything is okay.
  37. The looks I notice as I walk into a room full of people (their uneasyness). 
  38. The people that act as if they don't see you or recognize you at events so they can avoid having to talk to you.
  39. Watching the video cd we prepared for the funeral home.
  40. Hearing songs that we used to listen to together through the years and now when I hear them all alone I feel so alone....

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Replies to This Discussion

51.  When someone says you are new to this.  (doesn't help)

52.  When someone says you'll get better in time.  (doesn't help)

53.  When someone says think about the good memories.   (doesn't help)

54.  Oh I know how you feel, my pet, sibling, neighbor, parent died  (not quite the same)

55.  I feel your pain, I had a broken relationship.  (sorry, different kind of pain)

56.  When the broken heart lives on, and on, and on and when you really know it can't be fixed.

57.  Weeping alone, even though it's been over 14 months.

58.  When the sun is shining outside, but it's not shining for me.

59.  When I read what would your husband want you to do (like I would take pleasure in him controlling me from beyond)

60.  When I read/hear in books and sermons that God wants us to be happy.  (maybe in the next life)

 

I just wanted to add to the list that I can definitely relate to.  You all said what I have been thinking so, thank you to you all, if I wasn't so depressed I would make a list of positive things like...

1.  It makes me feel relief when someone understands.

I agree Suzanne.  My grief counselor said she would like me to now put these in the order of importance to me and then start a list of things I am thankful for.  I haven't done either one yet.  I think having a list of some things I have to be thankful for would help me though - reading those everyday.  I think your point about hearing God wants us to be happy - I think it is more after our life here ends but I also think He wants to carry us in our sorrows and He does want to restore joy to our lives.   It is hard to hear or read though - I agree.  Sometimes life just doesn't make sense -

Sheryl
Suzanne said:

51.  When someone says you are new to this.  (doesn't help)

52.  When someone says you'll get better in time.  (doesn't help)

53.  When someone says think about the good memories.   (doesn't help)

54.  Oh I know how you feel, my pet, sibling, neighbor, parent died  (not quite the same)

55.  I feel your pain, I had a broken relationship.  (sorry, different kind of pain)

56.  When the broken heart lives on, and on, and on and when you really know it can't be fixed.

57.  Weeping alone, even though it's been over 14 months.

58.  When the sun is shining outside, but it's not shining for me.

59.  When I read what would your husband want you to do (like I would take pleasure in him controlling me from beyond)

60.  When I read/hear in books and sermons that God wants us to be happy.  (maybe in the next life)

 

I just wanted to add to the list that I can definitely relate to.  You all said what I have been thinking so, thank you to you all, if I wasn't so depressed I would make a list of positive things like...

1.  It makes me feel relief when someone understands.

Sheryl, I agree with your list and could add a few more. It's been almost 5 and a half months for me and it's still hard to comprehend that Jim is gone. Don't get me wrong, I know he is , but sometimes for a few moments I forget.Then it hits again. I look at the yard and realize that it's springtime and work needs to be done. I don't mind doing the work, but what I wouldn't do to have Jim here to ask questions . I've always been afraid of thunderstorms, but Jim was here for the last 38 yrs. to comfort me. What do I do now? I love and miss him so much. Thank God for this site and the people here. It sure helps to have people that understand. Hugs. Maybe we should try to work on that list of what we are thankful for, close to the top would be the friends we have here.
I agree - it looks like your husband passed away a few weeks before mine did.  I just was outside in the yard yesterday - I had a tree branch that was struck by lighting that fell into the neighbors yard.  Two of my sons helped take care of that.  While I was outside I was overwhelmed with all of the work I need to do outside.  My husband always did that for me.  I hope you find some comfort and help for your yard.

Barbara Roth said:
Sheryl, I agree with your list and could add a few more. It's been almost 5 and a half months for me and it's still hard to comprehend that Jim is gone. Don't get me wrong, I know he is , but sometimes for a few moments I forget.Then it hits again. I look at the yard and realize that it's springtime and work needs to be done. I don't mind doing the work, but what I wouldn't do to have Jim here to ask questions . I've always been afraid of thunderstorms, but Jim was here for the last 38 yrs. to comfort me. What do I do now? I love and miss him so much. Thank God for this site and the people here. It sure helps to have people that understand. Hugs. Maybe we should try to work on that list of what we are thankful for, close to the top would be the friends we have here.

That list is so true.  It may sound strange and I don't know if anyone else had this problem but I found going to the grocery store a nightmare.  I avoided it for as long as I could.  We would usually shop together and she had to be on a special diet so after she passed I still found myself putting the things she could eat in the shopping cart.  After I realized it.. I had to put them back.. which made it worse.  Most of the time I was crying and hyperventilating the whole time.  People I'm sure was wondering what the hell is wrong with that woman!  Many times I couldnt take it and just left the store with nothing.  It's funny cause I guess I'm the type that buys what her family likes and when it was just me... I honestly had no clue what i liked.. I just stood there in front of items not knowing what I liked or wanted.  Crazy huh?  But people who have never been through this don't realize that it's sometimes the little things in our daily lives that become so confusing and hard.  Because I'm sure for all of us.. almost everything we did everyday somehow revolved around them... and when they are gone.. we just sit there.. not knowing what we are suppose to be doing.. or where we are suppose to be.. I had to write lists in the beginning for myself to remember what to do that day.  It's been two years since she left and it's a little easier to handle... the tears dont come as hard or as often.. I talk to her all day.. everyday.. and miss her more than anyone realizes but like I told someone the other day.. It never ever goes away..you just find ways to try and deal with it.  I would'nt wish this on anyone. 

 

All my love and prayers to everyone

Christine

The first time I went to the store by myself I got in here and didn't know what to buy. I was by myself for the first time in my life. Well the dogs and cats got there food but I had nothing. I don't really remember the first time I got struff for my self.  guess when I had to go. Everyday is a new first. With things opping up all the time. Time moves on.

I have a picture of my husband on my desktop computer that was taken this summer while we were on a pontoon.  It was a sunny day but the picture doesn't have sunbeams coming down.  I can tell you more then once I will be working on the computer and then his picture pops up with sunbeams shining down - I had my son take a picture of it - I swear it is him trying to comfort me.



Jerry said:

   I never did much shopping alone,either my wife did it,or I went with her.This is a new experience for me.

It has been 14 months since she is gone,I dont cry often, but do talk out loud to her when I am alone in out house. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Grocery shopping is horrible. It's been 5 and a half months, and I still can't get it together!! And I was the one who always did the shopping! I buy t.v. dinners alot because I just can't figure out what to make for one person. I still look at the stuff I bought for Jim, and lots of times the tears just happen. People tell me to remember the good times, yet when I do, I feel worse because I know that I wont experience that happiness again. Does that make sense? Hugs to all .
   It does make sense to anyone going through this. Last night was my aunts 82nd birthday. My family thought it would be a good idea to take her out to dinner,my Mom who my aunt lived with for the past 16 years passed away 6 weeks ago. As the evening went on,I think we both got sadder and sadder,it was strange being out with out the people that meant the most to us not being  there.
For me also grocery shopping is horrible. I have a list because there is not much I need, mainly coffee and my ljunk staple, popcorn. But when I get in the grocery store I end up going up and down every isle and picking up groceries as if Neal were here and I was cooking for him. When I get to the car and realize what I have done, I cry all the way home. I don't cook much now so I have groceries comming out my ears. Who would have thought that grocery shopping would be such an ordeal. But then everything now is an ordeal. Hugs to all.

Wow it sounds like grocery shopping should be at the top of the list for many of us.  I have to say - that has been somewhat hard however I have my son and grandchildren living with me and the grandchildren have Cystic Fibrosis so much of the grocery shopping over the years has been focused on their dietary needs to that hasn't been as difficult for me as it has for many of you.

 

Yes who would have thought goning to the store was a big deal. I have a question for everything since we're talking about crazy things changing in our life. What's wrong with people or friends who just stop calling you. Now that I am a widow I go out of my way to call people and keep up with those who need support. Never mind I just answered my own question. Everyoneof us will be in this position one day, I think some of us will just handle it better.

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